Sunday, October 12, 2008

What a waste of tape...

In the category of "Things I Dislike" falls another bit with tape. In this instance, the culprit is not something that is visible on the bike. In fact, if you don't let these guys tape your bars, it is totally invisible.

What I'm talking about is the tape that is used to hold down brake and shift cables (brake only if it's Shimano) to a road handlebar prior to applying handlebar tape. In the case of Shimano brake housing, only one piece of electrical tape (wrapped around the bar only 1 1/2 times) is required. This should be located on the flat part of the bar, just to the inside of the bend. Really, that's all that you need. Campy is a bit different with the stiffer shift housing exiting the lever on the outside and routed either to the inside or outside depending on your preference. With Campy, a wrap of 1 1/2 times around the bar at the bend and a wrap on the flat section is necessary.

So, when I was replacing cables on this Campy equipped Bianchi, the amount of electrical tape used to hold down the cable housings drew my ire. Save your electrical tape! Let the handlebar tape do the final job of securing the cable housings in place!

(What's in the cup: A customer brought me a pound of dark roast coffee from the shop where he is a roaster. The label on the bag said Graffeo Simply the world's finest coffee. Later a friend came in to the shop, saw the bag, and said something like "Oh, wow, that's the best." As the bag sat on my desk next to me while I answered some e-mails, I could smell the coffee beans and knew there was something special inside. Well, this morning I brewed a pot and can say, yes, this is simply the world's finest coffee. I had to add a "Things I Like" label because of the coffee. Yum!)


Mr. Jones said...

Ooh, nasty tape job. Used to see that once in a while at the shop I worked at.

And you are correct, Grafeo roasts the best coffee, period. Check out their shop on Fourth street in San Rafael (next to Marelli Shoe Repair) next time you are out this way.

Guitar Ted said...

That draws my ire quite often. Especially if the electrical tape is gooey. Which nine times out of ten, it is. Yuck!

Head Honcho said...

Mike, I'm having too much fun reading your blog here. I've been getting a few terrible wrap jobs in lately. Even if they don't need it, you'll more than likely find me undoing said bad wrap job, and doing it up proper like. I just giggle inside a little bit everytime I see a bad tape job now.

blackmountaincycles said...

Then you'd like the bike with the Brooks leather tape that came in yesterday. It was wrapped starting at the top - which, of course, means that the edges were all frayed/peeling out on the!

MJ @ Dyslexic Research said...

This is an old post, but if anyone ever looks at it, I have started using hockey tape. The real stuff not athletic tape. They come in a variety of colors and are great at replacing everything that electrical tape does. They are a little sticky at first but never do the tape slide thing that electrical tape does. Also I tend to tape at the bend and near the stem, it seems to help.

One last usage for hockey tape is to replace the little frayed plastic ends of thumbshifters, downtube shifters, and barcons.

Keep up the blog, I enjoy all of the classic mountain bikes you get to work on.

Thanks, Matt of